Copyright 2013 James Marsh
Fly Fishing Guide for the Chattahoochee River Tailwater
The first section of water would be considered the dam downstream to Abbots Bridge, a
distance of about thirteen miles. This section of the upper Chattahoochee is sometimes
difficult to fish because it is narrow and relatively deep with strong current anytime water
is being release. It is thought that the strong current lowers the available aquatic insect
population in this area but it still produces a good number of trout.
The section of the river extending from Hwy 20 to Abbott's Bridge is for artificial bait only.
This limits the bank bait fisherman. This section can be fished from the bank by fly
anglers but it is far best fished from a boat. Wading can be very dangerous in this area
and you should check the schedule for sure and keep a close look at the water levels.
The river changes a little and widens out some from Abbots Bridge downstream for
about four miles to the Medlock Bridge. This has the effect of reducing the amount of
current. There are more aquatic insects in this section than there are upstream. Natural
bait is prohibited in this section also. From the Medlock Bridge to Jones Bridge, a
distance of about three miles, natural bait is permitted and competition from the corn
anglers comes into play again. The Chattahoochee River shoals begin to show up in the
river and when the water is off, they are completely out of the water. This provides good
structure and holding areas for trout but also good access for bank anglers. The farther
you go, the more shoals you will find.
From Jones Bridge downstream to Azalea Drive, a distance of about eleven miles, you'll
find an excellent section of the Chattahoochee River tailwater. Unfortunately, bait is also
allowed in this section. This stretch of water has plenty of shoals and plenty of trout hold
there. There are some large, deep pools created by the rock substrate. The aquatic
insect population seems to increase in this section.
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Photo Courtesy Steven Lamb